Photo TR: CoasterMania '07

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Photo TR: CoasterMania '07

Postby BeemerBoy » Mon Jun 18, 2007 6:49 pm

CoasterMania '07

*Warning - scary statement ahead*

Okay, I'll be completely honest. We LOVE Cedar Point! While many of you are scratching your heads, I'll just say that I'm not big on general industry awards, but I simply can't argue the "World's Greatest Amusement Park" title they love to flaunt.

Our last visits were in '02 and '03; both during CoasterMania. While you'd tend to think the abundance of CP fanboys would cast an annoying shadow on such a long day at the park, we've found the event (despite some unfortunate circumstances in '03) to be quite enjoyable. For $32, it's hard to argue with over 18 hours of park time, including 4+ hours of ERT, a pretty good picnic lunch, and a nice Q&A session with the top Cedar Point executives. Well, in our minds anyway.

As I mentioned, our '03 visit was during TTd's first month or so of operation. It turned out that Dragster decided to act like a 420 foot tall lawn ornament for the duration of the event that year. While everything else was still enjoyable, Dragster's maintanence issues, and subsequent handling of by park execs left a sour taste in our mouths.

Basically, this is what happened. Both the alarm clock AND the front desk clerk failed to wake us up on time. Therefore, we arrived about an hour late for the morning ERT, and failed to hear the announcement regarding TTD. Throughout the day we kept hearing people mention about exit passes that were handed out as an apology for TTD possibly being down all day.

Well, at the picnic lunch, I was able to speak with one of the executives briefly (name withheld). I explained how and why we arrived a bit late to the event, and kindly asked if there were anymore exit passes to be handed out. He politely answered, "I'm sorry, but unfortunately we gave them all away this morning." I understood, and proceeded to compliment Cedar Point on a terrific event despite the unfortunate TTD situation.

He asked where we were from, and upon hearing that we roadtripped it from South Florida, he leaned closer and quietly said "don't tell anyone, but here's a couple for you," as he reached into his pocket and promptly pulled out two TTD exit passes.

I gladly accepted, thanked him as we shook hands, finished our conversation, and walked away. Okay, inside I'm thinking why did you blatantly just lie to me before handing me passes? Obviously, the ride never opened and we left with two unused passes.

Fast forward to this past friday (6-15-07). For four years, I was always more upset at being lied to than missing a ride on Dragster (am I wrong for feeling that way?). However, considering how much we still love the park, our willingness to forgive and allow for redemption, and the addition of Maverick, it was time to head back to "the point." Armed with two extremely outdated 2003 TTD exit passes. ;)

I'll get into the meat of the details from the event prior to the second set of pics.

We arrived on Thursday around 3pm, checked into our hotel, rested a while, and then entered the park at 5pm for the Starlight hours offered at a reduced rate. We were accompanied by Shannon's cousin Todd, for his first highly anticipated visit to the point. Todd shed somewhere in the neighborhood of 21 lbs. over the last couple months by walking around 150 miles. He did so with the inspiration of riding Millennium Force comfortably. Give him a big hand for that one!

The five hours gave us a great opportunity to be gracious park guides, and help him knock out about 8 credits. That allowed us to enjoy the next day's event at a more leisurely pace. From 5pm to 10pm we were able to ride TTD, MF, Maverick, No Streak, Mine Train, Gemini, Woodstock, Magnum, and TTd once again in the dark during the fireworks display. Not too shabby for 5 hours.

Finally, on to the pics......
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Postby BeemerBoy » Mon Jun 18, 2007 6:49 pm

Day Two.

Our day at the park began at 6am, as we weren't in a huge rush to join the running of the bulls to Maverick. Instead, we purposely arrived casually late and went straight to Raptor. A big thank you goes out to Maverick for thinning the lines to both Raptor and MF for morning ERT. We managed 3 front seat rides in about 15 minutes, and then headed over to MF (I absolutely refuse to call coasters cutesy names like Millie, btw.)

MF was about a 15 minute wait, and was still running great. There was definitely a noticeable Intamin shake after the first overbank, but the rest of the course still delivered in my mind. I'm not gonna fan any flames about airtime or lack thereof, but my butt managed to float off the seat four different times, thus leaving me satisfied. Personally, I'm a height and speed freak, so the first drop and many low-to-the-ground moments have always been more important to me when it comes to judging this ride.

We then headed over to Maverick for one ride before the morning ERT session ended. Here's my thoughts on the ride. From the front seat with a little work on your part, it's the best ride in the park. The ride from any other seat just didn't seem to cut it with me. Quite honestly, it took 3 rides on it before I was even willing to rank it above Wildcat, which I really love.

I found that if I leaned forward from the very beginning, hunching over and sticking my head out as if riding a crotch rocket motorcycle, the ride became comfortable and very exciting. By leaning forward, seeing and anticipating the transitions and turns, I was able to avoid what was rather uncomfortable head and neck banging from any other seat.

The course itself was really fun. It had a little bit of everything in it, and only once did the pace slow down almost to a stop (curiously, when we rode later in the day with 6 trains on the course, our train slowed to a crawl before launching out of the tunnel).

The lack of the heartline, although disappointing, didn't really make a huge differnce. Lauching into a trim was a bit odd, but you definitely picked up plenty of speed immediately following it. All in all, as long as it remains as smooth and quiet as it currently is, CP has a big winner on its hands.

Following our morning ERT, we headed to the front of the park for what was the only real disappointment of the day. Strangely, there was only one location open for any real food for the enthusiasts. It created a huge line just for donuts and muffins. Oh well, not the end of the world as we still had some time to kill before the park opened at 10 to the GP.

At noon, we headed to the convention center for a nice Q&A session with CP Executives, including Dick Kinzel himself. Honestly, I had no intentions of asking anything, and allowing the throngs of coaster dorks to do the work for me while we sat and listened. Here's a brief synopsis of what was said. Please remember, I only took mental notes, so none of the following is directly quoted, and only summarized.

First off, a gentleman asked the panel if they had any reservations about going back to Intamin after TTD. Following some small laughter by the panelists, which included about seven executives to which I can't remember any but Mr. Kinzel specifically, the answer was no. Kinzel expressed that he was dismayed that Maverick opened a couple weeks later than planned, and placed blame on the manufacturer, but admitted that Intamin delivered a satisfying product in the end.

He also said that there were 3 coaster proposals on the table before they settled on Maverick. One was similair to MF, one was similiar to Magnum or something, and the other I don't recall. This got me to thinking about wood. I then grabbed the mic and asked if at anytime during the planning stages with Intamin, was an Intamin woodie considered?

His answer: NO. I followed up by asking will there ever be? his answer once again: NO. Ok then, thanks. None of it was demeaning, but the answers were clear and concise. Folks, I wouldn't go placing any bets on Intamin wood showing up at the point anytime soon. :(

They were, however, very encouraged by working with GCI and Renegade. The vibe was that Renegade will be a measuring stick for future wood installations at CF parks.

Here's the rest of the highlights:

- There will definitely NOT be any B&M flyer at CP, ever.
- A dive machine is not out of the question.
- One of the gentlemen in charge of future ride installations or whatever, has been pushing for a darkride for years now.
- The earring rule on Maverick is implemented by Intamin, not CP.
- This is speculation on my part, but I'd look for KD to receive something big in the next few years.
- Demon Drop is still for sale.
- When discussing theming, Kinzel made the comment that if given the choice, he'd always rather spend an extra million on more track than theming.
- And on a lighter note, someone asked if they had ridden Kingda Ka? I can't remember who answered, but they said they were there to ride ET, and after pausing for comedic effect, said that KK was down.
- Finally, it was mentioned that it's a possibility that Clair Hain of GCI *may* eventually try to improve Mean Streak. We can only hope!

Following the Q&A, we caught up with someone to ask about our 2003 exit passes. Without hesitation, we were directed to park operations, where they glady took down our last name and instructed us to provide it at any time to the ride op at the exit of TTD for a direct pass onboard. Thank you Cedar Point! Without a doubt, this made my day, and you easily redeemed yourself. =)

That was alot to read through, so I'll just say that everything else went terrific, and we are definitely anxious to return asap. Thank you all for reading. Now onto the second batch of pics. Enjoy.
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Postby BeemerBoy » Mon Jun 18, 2007 6:49 pm

I gotta also say that it was a pleasure meeting many of you during our two days there. We ran into "the one," coreyml and dougstanton (sorry it took us that long to run into you guys :( ), Jerry (who is a mainstay over at CoasterFanatics.com), and the two GCI interns...aka Adam and Evan. I still want one of those shirts! :) (btw, please tell the boys to get to work on Mean Streak, if indeed there's any real possibility there.) ;)
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Postby robbalvey » Mon Jun 18, 2007 6:49 pm

OMG, this is seriously one of the BEST TR's I've seen on the site! I *LAUGHED MY A$$ OFF* at the 'list of line jumpers.'

It really just goes to show you that many of us DO have a great sense of humor!

Thanks for posting....this is FRONT PAGE WORTHY!!!!

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Postby ginzo » Mon Jun 18, 2007 7:00 pm

You are really hardcore to drive from Florida to Cedar Point. I don't think I'd attempt that. At least not without some stopover parks or something.

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Postby Skyscraper » Mon Jun 18, 2007 7:14 pm

One of the best trip reports I saw of Cedar Point...

You made the best description of Iron Dragon

Hi, I'm Draggin' Iron. As the park's unofficial monrail, I just wanted to say a quick hello before they head over to MF.

!!! I just can't stop laughing !

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Postby asr » Mon Jun 18, 2007 7:28 pm

Don't diss Iron Dragon!

Anyway, cool TR, I like the Mean Streak jokes. Unlike Iron Dragon, that ride deserves the hatred it gets. It is the worst coaster I have ever had the displeasure of riding. TAER IT DOWN!!11!!!!!* :devil:

* = Misspelling intentional

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Postby jarmor » Mon Jun 18, 2007 8:05 pm

..im still waiting on his thoughts on wood...or did I miss it? And it sucks that you were lied to. Personally I wouldn't have taken the passes but rather let everyone know about the situation...
"B&M will NEVER build a coaster over 300 ft..." until 2012
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Postby ginzo » Mon Jun 18, 2007 8:21 pm

jarmor wrote:..im still waiting on his thoughts on wood...or did I miss it? And it sucks that you were lied to. Personally I wouldn't have taken the passes but rather let everyone know about the situation...


From what he said, I don't see what the big deal is. Maybe they just had a set number of exit passes earmarked for this event, and they were all gone when BeemerBoy asked. God forbid they don't give every exit pass they have out at some enthusiast event.

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Postby pianojohn » Mon Jun 18, 2007 8:35 pm

Great Siouxsie Sue reference! Awesome pics too. Too bad about the no Intamin woodie....but we can hope!

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